The Long Faithfulness

I want to follow up on the posts from last week about cultivating a covenantal imagination within the church.

Again, a covenantal imagination is fostered when we see church as a place where we make and keep promises to each other. Love is expressed in the hard work of forgiveness and fidelity across the years. Church is the sacramental and communal outworking of God's hesed, God's long faithfulness.

This hesed is what carries us through the disillusionments with church. In this, as Bonhoeffer pointed out, disillusionment can be a grace. Disillusionment is the threshold of hesed, the testing and proving ground.

As I pointed out last week, what binds us together as a church beyond liking each other? Liking each other isn't a substantial enough foundation for the long faithfulness. There has to be more. There has to be promise keeping in the face of disillusionment.

We are not the body of Christ because we like each other. We are the body of Christ because we promise to each other. That is what allows us to practice the long faithfulness.

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